With Paul Zelizer, founder of the Awarepreneurs Community and Podcast. Paul is one of the first business coaches to focus on the needs of conscious entrepreneurs and social impact businesses. He also works with leaders to help them increase the transformational impact that they have.

Paul is the former Director of Social Media for Wisdom 2.0, one of the premier mindfulness brands in the world. In 2017, he founded Awarepreneurs – two of the things the company is known for is our popular podcast and the Awarepreneurs Community, a dynamic group of hundreds social and wellness entrepreneurs who support each other in growing their businesses, increasing their positive impact and practicing self care.

In this conversation, we dig into Paul’s path, beginning with his introduction to awareness practices, his roots in service and a career oriented to service, and how compassion fatigue and social work led him to becoming an entrepreneur and coach to other socially conscious entrepreneurs.

One of the ways Paul supports his clients is by helping create massive shifts in their thinking around what makes a business successful – it turns out that the data shows that businesses that are socially conscious, values-driven businesses, are navigating the current disruption in the marketplace much better, massively better, than “traditional” businesses.

So Paul helps his clients embrace this new paradigm in creating their own path to success, flips their thinking, and helps them with business fundamentals in services to their larger missions.

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Biggest takeaways (or quotes) you don’t want to miss:

  • What changed the trajectory of Paul’s life at age 17.
  • How compassion fatigue lead to Paul’s next reinvention.
  • What can happen when you just keep saying yes.
  • Regarding Paul’s amazing clients: “Every cell in their being is steeped in that intentionality … they are deeply committed to transforming some pretty stuck patterns on planet earth.”
  • Paul’s powerful summary of Victor Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning.”

Check out these highlights:

6:25 The gift that Paul’s good family friend gave him 35 years ago that changed his life.

8:50 How Paul began doing service work with other teens when he was still a teen.

12:00 The work that Paul and his friend did with Zappos and Google – “two wisdom do-gooders living across a horse pasture from each other.”

17:15 Reinvention was not a snapping of the fingers and magic fell out of the sky. It was messy and complicated.

22:50 Listen to Paul break down his approach with his clients, the importance of dialing in your “Why, Who, What, and How”.

23:35 “Marketing by shiny object syndrome.”

26:54 Companies that are values-driven, that are ESG (env’t and social governance), NOT green lipstick on a pig, those companies have navigated this change MASSIVELY better.  It’s a profound difference.

“Let’s take a look at the research – I get it. Dominant culture business has dominated business. But now those companies are suffering. But the new reality we are in, is that companies that are values-driven are doing massively better during the current disruption.”

37:55 “Parenting and Entrepreneurship are the greatest self-development courses you never knew you were signing up for.”

44:45 Being a guest (on a podcast) is the single most powerful, under-rated marketing strategy that no one is talking about.

How to get in touch with Paul.

On social media:





Learn more about Paul and his work via his consulting website here or his community site, Awarepreneurs, here.

Listen to Paul’s Podcast, Awarepreneurs, here

Imperfect Show Notes

We are happy to offer these imperfect show notes to make this podcast more accessible to those who are hearing impaired or those who prefer reading over listening. While we would love to offer more polished show notes, we are currently offering an automated transcription (which likely includes errors, but hopefully will still deliver great value), below.

GGGB Intro  00:00

Here’s what you get on today’s episode of Guts, Grit & Great Business. 

Paul Zelizer  00:05

Part of my job is to like say to a client, I love that your values align, but this story that it kind of hampers your ability to make money and provide for your family. Let’s take a look at the research. And actually, I get it. And there is a way in which dominant culture business single bottom line, the money is all that matters has dominated business, but we’re in a new time. And that’s not true anymore. Those companies are the ones that are suffering and the ones that have done them work to really articulate their why their values and their purpose and their impact statement. They are thriving in a way that the companies that haven’t done this, so there’s a new reality we’re in. But there’s an old mindset about that, and many people in our space are still working with and sometimes my job is to just say, let’s take a look at the data and with a lot of love. It’s time to get rid of that story because it’s actually getting in the way both of you helping people and of you being able to take care of your family.

GGGB Intro  01:05

The Adventure of entrepreneurship and building a life and business you love preferably at the same time is not for the faint of heart. That’s why Heather Pearce Campbell is bringing you a dose of guts, grit and great business stories that will inspire and motivate you to create what you want in your business and life. Welcome to the Guts, Grit & Great Business podcast where endurance is required. Now here’s your host, The Legal Website Warrior®, Heather Pearce Campbell.

Heather Pearce Campbell  01:37

Alrighty! Hello, and welcome. I am Heather Pearce Campbell, The Legal Website Warrior®. I’m an attorney and legal coach based here in Seattle, Washington. Welcome to another episode of Guts, Grit & Great Business. So today I am super excited to bring you my friend Paul Zelizer. Paul, welcome. How are you? 

Paul Zelizer  02:03

Oh, it’s so good to be here. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  02:04

How are you?

Paul Zelizer  02:06

I’m good. And I’m also just like, wow, humans. Wow, life on planet Earth right now. Wow. And I’m also really good. So weird mix. But that’s how I am. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  02:17

Well, I appreciate the honesty. And yes, we’ll have lots to talk about today. So for those listening, let me introduce Paul. So Paul Zelizer is one of the first business coaches to focus on the needs of conscious entrepreneurs and social impact businesses. He also works with leaders to help them increase the transformational impact that they have. Paul is the former director of social media for Wisdom 2.01 of the premier mindfulness brands in the world. In 2017, he founded Awarepreneurs, two of the things that company is known for is their popular podcast and the Awarepreneurs community, a dynamic group of hundreds of social and wellness entrepreneurs who support each other in growing their businesses, increasing their positive impact and practicing self care. So Paul, and I connected through LinkedIn, which is one of my favorite platforms for connecting and he’s been one of my favorite people ever since. So Paul, I’m super excited to be connecting with you today. I love the work that you do. I love the way that you support the folks in your group. Thanks so much for joining. 

Paul Zelizer  03:28

It’s such an honor. And when I heard you’re launching a podcast, I was like Heather, podcasting put them together. Yeah.

Heather Pearce Campbell  03:50

Well, thank you for that. I’ll totally pay you later for that. 

Paul Zelizer  03:53

Oh, yeah. Yeah, chocolate works out there. Yeah, just get get the nice Chocolate. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  03:58

Chocolate. Yeah, that’s a definitely a love language for me. So yeah, you’ve got some more chocolate coming your way? And for me, the podcast really the way that I saw a podcast fitting because for the longest time, I never actually thought of having a podcast. But I love I mean, as you know, I love talking to people. I love connecting with people. I love having conversations about business and life. And so I just thought, you know, the more that I thought about it, the more it made sense to just do this in a more structured format and then bring those conversations to the folks that I was already serving. So there you go.

Paul Zelizer  04:35

I like to joke My name is Paul and I’m podcast obsessed, so you don’t need to convince me.

Heather Pearce Campbell  04:42

I love that it has been surprising because I went from literally knowing nothing about how to have a podcast and in four weeks had one fully launched and out the door. Right and so it was super fun. The guys that helped me launch it did a great job and they make it so easy and break it down. And now I’m like, Yeah, everybody should have a podcast. Everybody should. Totally.

Paul Zelizer  05:05

We’re just gonna talk. Sorry, listeners, we’re just gonna like rant on podcasts.

Heather Pearce Campbell  05:11

No, really. We are both fans. I know. Well, Paul, talk to us backtrack for us. And for people that don’t know, you, take us back to your roots. Where did you get started? Like when you think back to the path that began years ago, and has led you to where you are now? Where did that path start? 

Paul Zelizer  05:31

Oh, goodness, personally, professionally? 

Heather Pearce Campbell  05:33


Paul Zelizer  05:34

Both? Wow. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  05:36

Yeah. When you think back to something that really, you know, because I obviously know a little bit about you and your history and social work and like, you have a very, very interesting path. 

Paul Zelizer  05:46

So when I was 17 years old, there was a conversation that happened that changed the trajectory of my life. And I kind of put a pin on that map, like right there. And what happened was, I was in high school, and I was, you know, kind of coming off the rails a little bit with drugs and alcohol. And then a particularly bad night, I woke up in the morning feeling really terrible and ashamed about what had happened the night before. And a very, I sat down with a family friend who is a very wise woman, and she, she explained my nervous system to me. She said, Paul, you’re wired for poignant experiences. You’re wired for poignant experiences. And this goes one of two ways. One is you have a lifetime of addiction and drama, and you probably die an early death, right? And you’re miserable, a lot of suffering. Or there’s these things called awareness practices, right? Something to help you cultivate a sense of balance and alive ness, there’s a ton of them out there. I don’t care which one you pick, but if you pick one, you’ll live a good life, you’ll help people and on your deathbed, you’ll be you’ll feel good about what you did on this earth. Please pick one. Wow. And I heard her she wasn’t like come to my guru. She wasn’t. She wasn’t a brand attach. It wasn’t like my church is the best you should, like, do this or what she just was explaining my nervous system and helping me kind of understand, you know, I was a football player and a lacrosse player and like I just was wanted a likeness. And I heard her so at 752. That was 35 years ago, and 35 years ago started on a journey of personal development and learning about meditation and yoga. And that conversation changed the trajectory of my life. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  07:38

Wow. And you said that was a family friend. 

Paul Zelizer  07:41

Yeah. Friend of my mom’s actually. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  07:43

Wow, what a gift. Such a gift. So how did you get started? Right? So she tells you this thing, gives you this message? You have all the options out there, what did you choose to start with?

Paul Zelizer  07:57

Why just got really interested in all kinds of different paths of depth. I’m, you know, I was hanging out with Father Joe Gilligan, who is an Irish Catholic priest, who’s studied nine languages had traveled, who spoke nine languages had traveled the world and was dying of brain cancer when I met him, right? And what if you could look in father Joe’s eyes and just see the law, you know, and I grew up Jewish, but like I didn’t, I just, this guy knew something about living a life of depth and meaning. And I kept hearing people who had that, you know, learned about yoga, meditation, whatever. The word service just kept coming up in so many different paths, including the path that I grew up in as a Jew. And I started in service work and started volunteering in a drug and alcohol treatment program for teens when I was still a teen, right. And that led to a number of things, including eventually a 15 year career in social work, doing innovative programs, like helping engage them fathers, who had kind of started down some path of trouble and getting re engaged as dads and with their kids and their families and doing restorative justice and all kinds of just beautiful, hard, complicated service work for now. 15 years.

Heather Pearce Campbell  09:18

Wow. Well, and what a way to be of service to to parents and fathers who need to be there for their children, right, and have the option to change their choices so that they can

Paul Zelizer  09:31

and it was Yeah, beautiful work. I lived in New Mexico for most of that time. I moved here in 1993. So I got to work in the little villages near the Colorado border and work with the Hispanic grandmothers and the Catholic Church. And these little towns, there was like a school and a church and nothing else, maybe a clinic occasionally, you know, and did a lot of the work on the pueblos of northern New Mexico the reservation so it’s just fabulous, beautiful, complicated work with lots of intergenerational From our own cultural tensions and families who cared about their kids who were, you know, in some trouble and as beautiful and complicated were

Heather Pearce Campbell  10:10

Yeah, yeah. Well, and you obviously have a deep, deep, rich history living that work. I mean, since basically you were a teenager. Exactly. So talk to us share with us about the transition out of that work and into more of what you’re doing now. What did that look like? what sparked that transition?

Paul Zelizer  10:30

A couple things. One is it just got you know, I get tired compassion fatigue, that much trauma and addiction and violence was was hard after a while and I burned out. And I needed now also got tired of being a broke social worker. You know, I had to find I had a kid and a number of things kind of got my attention in that. Yeah, I was tired. I was burnt out. I had a kid my work was then dating i a marriage I was in to my daughter’s mom and dad and I needed to reinvent myself. And at the same time, a friend of mine needed to reinvent himself. His name is Soren Gord hammer. And he became known as the founder of wisdom 2.0. This is before it started. But we lived across the horse pasture from each other in northern New Mexico in a little town, a little art community. And he had done things like started a nonprofit that taught meditation and yoga to incarcerated teens, right. And he had a little nine month old, and I had a three year old and we were dads who loved our kids who were both getting divorced. And both my dad called us wisdom, do gooders. We needed to reinvent ourselves pretty fast, because we didn’t have a lot of money in the bank. And we got on Twitter in 2008. And started and back when hardly anybody in New Mexico was on Twitter or using social media. And suddenly, we were like, went from the little town that we lived in, in northern New Mexico. And we were at Zappos talking to Tony Shea and the leadership team. On the day, they were handing out t shirts saying thank you for making us a billion dollar a year company, because Tony and his team are really interested in positive psychology and how you can use that in a business environment. And then we were at Google. In Google. Now it’s well known, they have a program called Search Inside Yourself where they teach mindfulness and emotional intelligence. It’s been 10s of 1000s of employees. Now, last I heard of is 60,000. I think it’s higher than that now. And the book hadn’t come out Google was playing their cards very close to their chest that they were teaching mindfulness and emotional intelligence. Now the they wrote a book and there’s a leadership institute. But back in 2009 2010, nobody was talking about that stuff. But we were on social media peep, it was a very small kind of closed system. And people are like, wow, here’s some folks who are willing to talk about that, even though they were billion dollar a year CEOs, and I lived in an old Adobe, and Soren lived in a double wide trailer and a little place called Dick’s in New Mexico, we started getting into the conversation, and there was enough relevance from what I had studied in my own personal life. And then in the work I did that, even though I didn’t know much about business, people who are very, very good at it, wanted some of the history and information that we knew from our training, and they shared with us what they know. And when somebody is running a program at Google says, Do you want to come and talk to us about that? Say yes, yes.

Heather Pearce Campbell  13:42

The takeaway is, yeah. Well, I love that a couple of wisdom do gooders that lived across the pasture from each other. But you know, what an origin story, right? A

Paul Zelizer  13:56

lot of story, right? Yeah.

Heather Pearce Campbell  13:59

That’s a great story. So Wow. So you get those experiences at Zappos at Google, then then what happens? How does that translate into your heart for the entrepreneurs that you work with now?

Paul Zelizer  14:14

Well, Soren wrote this book called wisdom 2.0, which did okay, but not great. But eventually he decided he wanted to launch a conference and he asked me to come work on the marketing team. And that conference really took off now it’s a theory Well, COVID-19 pre COVID-19 is a series of conferences all around the world, but at its largest, it was 4000 plus people in Silicon Valley, in the people who are on the stage where a lot of leaders and tech companies and other large companies air b&b and Facebook and the compassion initiative at LinkedIn and Google talking about Search Inside Yourself, along with very well known spiritual teachers like Eckhart Tolle and Marianne Williamson and Byron, Katie, etc. Right? That was his whole thing, but in the audience, so I was like, Alright, whatever, it’s kind of cool that Google’s teaching this and if you help a manager at Google or Facebook or Twitter be a little less stressed, the company makes more money. And there are other outcomes that businesses tend to like, turnover goes down, health insurance costs go down, etc, right. But I’m like, sorry, Facebook, sorry, Google, you know, if Facebook team does better, making money and doing more selling us more ads, it’s not that inspiring to me, like the fundamental business model of what these companies were doing. Some of them actually think are having harm. And and many of them weren’t that inspiring to me, but in the audience for all these innovative wisdom and social entrepreneurs, who were like, excited to see these things happening, but you know, we’re doing, at least to me much more innovative work, and I got much more interested in who was you know, 50 to 60% of the people were so Lowe’s or five person companies or 10 person companies doing this incredibly innovative work. And I was like, I want to talk to these people. And they, you know, we started talking to each other, where are you gathering? Where’s our home? Where do we? Where do we have the kind of conversations that are happening on the big stage or wisdom 2.0 for Google, and Facebook and Twitter? Where do we go for that, and one thing led to another, and suddenly, people were hiring me to be their business coach who had those kind of businesses? Hmm,

Heather Pearce Campbell  16:40

I love that. Well, and I love that. You know, it’s fascinating, because I always like to ask people about their path into entrepreneurship. And people who are there also all tend to have these massive hearts for entrepreneurs, right? If you’ve walked the path, and you’ve lived in that space, and yeah, so I’d love I mean, I love knowing more now about how you got there. So talk to us now about present and the work that you are doing, either with folks in your group, or the variety of things that you’re up to.

Paul Zelizer  17:15

Sure. But before we go there, I just want to say if you’re a listener, and like, I started the conversation, like I needed to reinvent myself, but I want to say it was it was messy. I don’t want to like smooth out the men, if you want to email me and ask about that. I don’t, I don’t want to tell you more stories if you don’t need to hear him. But let me just say this was not the like, oh, it just fell in. In some ways. It is kind of cool. But it was not this, like magic, snap my fingers from social worker to social entrepreneur, and all the work fell out of the sky. There were lean years, especially at the beginning. And yeah, I made mistakes. And I had to get training. And some of the training didn’t work very well, in terms of the kinds of people I wanted to work with, or traditional coaches and business advisors that were making suggestions for sectors that are very, very different than the social entrepreneurs sector that I really was working with. It was it was messy and complicated. So I don’t I don’t want to disappear that before we like, oh, let’s talk about what it looks like. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  18:19

No, right. I appreciate you pausing there. I do like to look back and ask like, what were the points that you hit that felt really hard? Or like you wanted to give up? Right? Because people do tend to look at what’s happening now and only see that I mean, from the outside looking in. But no, I appreciate you saying that. Because anybody who’s been on the path and made big transitions like that in their life, I mean, I think that there’s a lot to relate to there. A lot of times it doesn’t just land in your lap or happen in the way that you think it might go even when you’re clear on what you want to be doing.

Paul Zelizer  18:56

Exactly. Yeah. So what is it like now as I basically have two businesses that are related, but separate? in Paul’s elizur? Calm, I do one on one and small group coaching for social entrepreneurs and wellness entrepreneurs and some increasingly leaders who are running, you know, 10 person 200 person small to medium sized businesses. And that’s pretty traditional, you know, one on one, or my groups are six people in groups, you know, typically for six month coaching contracts,

Heather Pearce Campbell  19:32

and what are the what are the kinds of things from the client side that they’re wanting to tackle? Like, what’s in their mind when they come to you and say, Hey, you know, we want to take this next step. What are they asking you for?

Paul Zelizer  19:45

It’s a great question. The one on one work is typically business, I’m thinking of one woman, they’ve kind of maxed out what they can do with the existing business model. So I’m thinking of somebody who had a mindfulness based business. And you know, she was literally seeing 32 people a week she she didn’t even have time to return the phone calls of the new people who are calling in. Because there was so much interest she had been out in a while. And it was time for a new business model. But she had been trained, let’s call her a coach, you’ve been training coaching, which usually is a one on one kind of arrangement, and she rocked it. But like it was time for a new evolution, but she was so busy. And she was in this terrible wheel of doing this service and answering the calls and scheduling everything herself and doing her newsletter bought by herself. And she’s literally doing 32 people a week plus all these, you know, her own bookkeeping, she just like, I literally can’t do this, I can’t even call back the other people. She wanted to get into doing groups and retreats and other calm leveraged offering something that, you know, people come to me around when they’re launching a book, when they have an online course and went to a membership community. That’s who my one on one clients typically are there, they’ve got something up and running, but they’re ready for more impact. And they’re also working really hard because the business models that are good for us when we’re up and when we’re getting starting. Right. That’s actually a great business model when you’re starting because you don’t have to have 100 people in an online quiz. It’s really hard when nobody knows who you are to get 100 people and of course, it’s actually not a great business model for most people when they start, but one on one is a great thing. Because one person says yes, and you say great, here’s my agreement. And when I hit that PayPal or you know, Venmo or whatever you pay me in Bitcoin, right? It’s all good. And we’re good to go, right? Yeah, at a certain point, it doesn’t work and for where people are trying to go, and that’s, that’s who tends to hire me one on one, the people who are in my small groups tend to be a little earlier on in their business development. And, you know, they’re doing okay, they’re like paying the bills, but just barely, they’re not saving much. They’re working hard. And they tend to be in spaces that what we would call saturated. So it’s not as easy to get businesses, if you’re a coach, it was easier to start a business as a coach 15 years ago than it is now for example, so somebody who’s like good at what they do, but they can use a little help to make it more unique and get to not just like barely paying the bills or paying the bills, but not a lot of extra to like, you know, more space, more ease and more options. Yeah.

Heather Pearce Campbell  22:37

So you’re I mean, you’re basically bringing some sounds like combination of some business fundamentals and like strategic coaching applied to folks in the socially conscious aware space. Yeah,

Paul Zelizer  22:52

I have all my clients in that part of the work I do for questions Why? in this order? If you answer these questions in this order, we can come up with something that’s likely to work for you why What’s your purpose and your values? Your who, right mentor mind says when you try to help everybody, you’re going to wind up helping nobody. You’re what what are the specific offerings? And because you asked who before what the technical team name for it is product market fit right? Making sure that your offerings are are well crafted and understand who you’re trying to help them what they are looking for change and help with right. And then the last thing is how and that’s the marketing strategies that most people treat as what I call it marketing by shiny object syndrome. Right Oh, my god pass but Heather and Paul were thing podcast things like rockin right now. It’s true. podcasting is at a certain point when Coronavirus it you couldn’t even buy a podcast mic because everybody was all sold out. Right?

Heather Pearce Campbell  23:52

Right. That’s right.

Paul Zelizer  23:54

Yes, podcasting, super popular and listens are up around the world. But if you just grab on to the strategy itself without the deeper work of your why, your who your what, then you’re just chasing after marketing strategy. So that’s the work that I do. A client has helped dig down into each of those buckets and make sure that we sync it all up so that it’s cohesive. And when you do that work, it just has a resonance that most people don’t do that where I want to be an entrepreneur, I want to be coached I got this great technology, I’ve just got to like they know they’re what and then they are you’re searching for their how but they haven’t really dialed in there who and there why. So when clients do that homework and really kind of have a cohesive thing that each layer builds on the layer before it. That’s the work that I do.

Heather Pearce Campbell  24:42

What do you love about that work?

Paul Zelizer  24:45

The people that I work with are just freakin awesome how they’re, they’re just awesome in the care and the depth and intentions to make a world a better place is just every cell in their being is steeped in intentionality. I don’t work with people who are just like, I want to make a total buddy and I want to drive a Bentley car. I don’t do that. Go Go away. Go find one of those bro internet marketers like I’m busy. Right? Right. Right. I work with a really deeply committed to transforming some pretty stuck patterns on planet Earth.

Heather Pearce Campbell  25:25

Yeah, yeah. Do you feel like and you can tell me no to this question or go away?

Paul Zelizer  25:36

Don’t ask me a hard question, Heather. I only want to like really like, easy softball question?

Heather Pearce Campbell  25:43

Well, because I think I serve some of these same people, right, and the ones who so deeply care about what they’re doing. Do you think? Is there any part that of that equation where you sense that because of that care? They’re at a disadvantage in business? Hmm.

Paul Zelizer  26:02

That’s a great question. I’ve finally started to refer to myself in certain clients, people who know me a little bit, I started calling myself the lovingly pushy, New York Jew business coach, right? No, I don’t think they’re at a disadvantage, I actually think it’s an advantage, except when you have a story, that it’s a disadvantage. Yes, this is a part of my work is to kind of shake that up. And actually, we’re seeing this actually. There’s a great company that through Awarepreneurs, which we haven’t touched on yet, but I can tell you about, we have a partnership going on. In the investment space, there’s a company called conscious capital, wealth management’s an investor companies, really smart folks, a colleague of mine, Greg berry is a key employee. They’re one of the things that conscious company Wealth Management has been talking about that in the math of disruption that we’re in because of COVID-19, and social unrest, and the economic Cliff that we’ve gone off of companies that are values driven, you can use the lingo, that are ESG, and environmental and social governance, paying attention to the environment and social benefit outcomes baked into the DNA of the company, not just a little we’re going to put a little green lipstick on a pig and call those cells a green company, we’re talking about deep, deep commitment into their DNA, those companies have navigated this change massively better than companies that have not been paying attention to environmental and social governance. Now, not just a little bit, we’re talking man. It’s a profound, the more disrupted the economy gets. And the more turbulent things get, the more people are asking questions about values, right? So I’m part of my job is to like, say to a client, I love that your values align, but this story that it kind of hampers your ability to make money and provide for your family. Let’s take a look at the research. And actually, I get it. And there is a way in which dominant culture business single bottom line, the money is all that matters has dominated business, but we’re in a new time. And that’s not true anymore. Those companies are the ones that are suffering and the ones that have done them work to really articulate their why their values and their purpose and their impact statement. They are thriving in a way that the companies that haven’t done this, so there’s a new reality we’re in. But there’s an old mindset about that, that many people in our space are still working with. And sometimes my job is to to say, let’s take a look at the data. And with a lot of love. It’s time to get rid of that story, because it’s actually getting in the way, both of you helping people and of you being able to take care of your family. Hmm. Well, I love that. I feel like there’s so much we can dig into on that one point. And do you think Let me start by asking do you think that the reason those right, what you call the ESG companies, the environmental and socially, you know, social government, governance focused companies? Do you think the reason they’re doing well is because consumers are paying attention to that or because they’re actually engaging in better business strategies because of that awareness, or both? But yeah, my best understanding is it’s both it’s both Yeah. That the old economy of cheap energy and cheap products and not thinking about long term value, it just it’s not the dollars and cents aren’t adding up as the technical term externalized costs, right. All this things that we pay with our tax money or whatever, and these companies that are doing business in harmful ways. They tend to find some way that tax payers or that the commons – our collective forests and water and air – they’ve they externalized these costs, even with externalizing them, you know, we just did this massive bailout in the US and gave a lot of money to some companies that I certainly have not aligned with values wise, because they can’t make it without these massive buyouts and layoffs and stuff. And the companies that are, you know, companies like Patagonia or organic Valley or other companies like that, not that they haven’t felt some shockwaves to this, but they’re doing just fine. They’re, they’re there, they have a great product, they aren’t externalizing costs. And the people that use these companies don’t pay three times as much for a Patagonia jacket, because they understand the quality and the way that they look at every fabric, every dye that they use, how they ship it to market, the packaging, they’re looking at these environmental social issues, and making choices accordingly. And their customers are like we understand the cost more. But we’re willing to do that.

Heather Pearce Campbell  31:12

Yes, absolutely. Well, it’s interesting. I actually just spoke yesterday to the woman that designed Patagonia’s zero waste program back in the 90s. But I love well, and there’s there’s, I mean, there’s so much in what you say, because I do think it’s a very multifaceted equation of how this all lines up and trying to take that and take really the golden nuggets, especially to people who are not necessarily in a in a big company, or even in, you know, a smaller, mid sized company, they’re building their own thing. They’re a scrappy solopreneur. They’ve got a small team, right? What do you say to those folks? Because my experience, and it’s part of my perspective, I mean, my whole goal around bringing The Legal Website Warrior® and legal supports to small businesses that need them, because they’re not otherwise served by the traditional legal market, but they need these tools to be successful and to have long term to have longevity, right and success. But is that some of those folks in this very heart centered service oriented space can have some challenges around building in the support that they need? Putting in the structure that they need? Right? Absolutely. I’m so supportive of their mission, and I want them to have more influence in the world. I want them to make more money so they can be influential. And I really see the money conversation around influencing for good the things that they want to influence. 

Paul Zelizer  32:45

It’s really hard to influence for good when you’re like freaking out about how you’re gonna buy dinner tonight. It’s really hard. Yeah, really hard.

Heather Pearce Campbell  32:53

Yeah. So for those folks, how, how does that conversation go? How I mean, is it and I’m sure it looks different business to business, but is that really just a, you know, more of some business fundamentals and how you grow a business? 

Paul Zelizer  33:09

And again, that’s why I like this really simple structure that if somebody will, like, pause on the what the how, just for a second, because we tend to be obsessed about that, right? I’m very goal oriented, and I’m great. Now, how matters, right? If you’re gonna do podcasting, let’s get really, really good at podcasting, right. And then there’s some people who do better than other people, right. And they tend to get better business results. But the why and the who – like really – 

Heather Pearce Campbell  33:37

The same conversations. 

Paul Zelizer  33:39

Same conversation, coming back to those, making sure there’s product market fit. And once you have somebody who’s starting the image, I use Heather. So if we can get somebody on the freeway, think about learning to drive, there’s that whole thing of you like turn on the key. And then you’re like, in the end, you have your license, but you’ve never driven alone before, there’s a process of just turning on the key and getting on the road. I oftentimes will say to client, even if you’re heading in the wrong direction, you’re still driving. And that’s different than sitting in the driveway thinking about driving, right? So like, if we could, what I would say is if we can get somebody like, understand your values, think about who you’re trying to help and who you’re there to serve. Think about your product or your service and really design it as best you know how. And then it’s it’s lean startup, like iterate your way to success and we can get you on the highway and in conversations with real humans and some of them will buy and some of them won’t. And at the beginning, your your conversion rate is probably going to be lower than it is I’m 13 years in business. If I talk to somebody on the phone, and they’re seriously considering a business coach, my conversion rates like 80% it didn’t use to be 80% right. We get you on the highway and we get to driving you’re going to get better Get your product to get better, your service will get better, you’ll get better as a marketer, you’ll meet people like Heather who are awesome connectors, go connect with Heather on LinkedIn. If you’re not she’s fabulous connector, right?

Heather Pearce Campbell  35:13

I’m a big fan of LinkedIn. Yeah.

Paul Zelizer  35:16

LinkedIn, awesome, go check out LinkedIn, you get better at it. But like sitting in the driveway or reading another book about driving, at a certain point, you turn on the key, you put it into drive, or you get it into reverse gear, if you’ve got a manual, and let’s get you on the highway. And when somebody’s actually having real world experience of being an entrepreneur making their first sale, or getting to that point where they they’re finally at replacement income, whatever their job was before. Now they can say, yeah, you know, I really didn’t do a great job with legal it’s fine for me to go buy one another’s packages and stop talking about buying it. And like, I don’t have to choose between dinner tonight and getting some help with legal. Right, right.

Heather Pearce Campbell  36:01

Yeah, it’s key. Well, and I love your analogy, because it’s really true that you don’t grow in business without the doing part. You have to be taking the action and doing and iterating and iterating and iterating. And making some messes.  And making some messes. Hopefully not too many. Maybe a mailbox  … I’m thinking of all the driving experiences in my family with six kids. 

Paul Zelizer  36:29

Right, right. Yeah, there’s a couple scratches on the mirror. And you just know that’s gonna happen. And hopefully it’s, you know, a scratch on the mirror kind of a oops, as opposed to, you know, having some people who have some experience in startup and in the business development process can just say, right, yeah, you might still get a few scrapes on the bumper here. But we’re going to try to keep you from hitting a tree at 97 miles an hour really,

Heather Pearce Campbell  36:55

totally. Well on the thing. I mean, the part the piece that I love, and I’m glad to hear your answer, because I obviously wasn’t sure which way it would go. But the really heart centered folks who are so committed to their path, because they’re, it’s really an expression of their purpose, right for a lot of these folks like and it’s it’s my belief that entrepreneurship can be if this is the way we choose to use it, not only some of the greatest expression in our life of like our greatest personal expression, but also our greatest expression of good in the world, and which is why I’m so committed to helping people in this space. And the interesting part about that a little bit what you and I were talking about before we hit record about work, having meaning, yeah, helps us with the grit part of the equation. Right. Entrepreneurship is not like a try one thing one time and you know – 

Paul Zelizer  37:54

I like to joke “parenting and entrepreneurship are the greatest personal development courses you never knew you were signing up for.” Right? Like you are gonna learn something. Really, really, really, really uncomfortable.

Heather Pearce Campbell  38:08

Right? And you better have some grit to make it through the hardest of those times. And if there’s if you’re if you don’t find meaning in your work or create meaning through you, I think just that path becomes so much more challenging than it already is. Yeah,

Paul Zelizer  38:25

yeah. Victor Frankl’s work, if anybody’s looking first, I’ve been talking with a bunch of people, my men’s group, we did a very significant conversation. If anybody doesn’t know Viktor Frankl was, he was in a Nazi concentration camp as a Jew. And that time was incredible years, I forget how many years but years, this was not a overnight stay right? He was there for years. And one of the things Viktor Frankl the book is called Man’s Search for Meaning. And in that book, he talks about the difference between people in the concentration camp who had a sense of meaning. And what he called the overly optimistic that person is like, oh, we’re gonna be fine. And this is just going to be short term and everything’s gonna be okay. And he said, The overly optimistic broke first and they die, the rainbows and the unicorn folks with COVID-19 and social unrest and going off in economic cliff. I’m just watching them, they can’t find that grit. He’s there. I love that word to like, and instead of like, overly optimistic, positive thinking, what Viktor Frankl encouraged us to do in challenging times, is to focus on meaning and purpose. What are your values? What’s your impact, and that even if it’s hard and we’re in challenging times will get us out of bed in a more engaged steady way. And I think this is particularly true in sort of the more personal development, you know, follow your bliss like it has not always been fun and 13 years of figuring my business out and working with people, it’s been hard and some really painful stuff has happened. If I was following my bliss, I would have not I wouldn’t be here.

Heather Pearce Campbell  40:12

You’d be at a chocolate factory.

Paul Zelizer  40:14

I’d be at a chocolate facotory … I don’t know where I’d be.

Heather Pearce Campbell  40:16

I’d be there too. 

Paul Zelizer  40:18

But I follow my purpose. And I followed my values and Victor Frankl’s said those are much more sustainable, and they tend to lead towards much more positive impact over the long haul than the people who are trying to follow their bliss.

Heather Pearce Campbell  40:33

Yeah, that’s right. Well, and I love that you brought that up as an example. So one of my actually, I think it was my outside of the welcome episode to this podcast, I my next episode was on grit. One of the books I talked about was Victor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning. And there’s a portion, there’s a segment of that book that I read, and the interesting thing was even the language he used, because, yes, if you can attach meaning, and you have meaning to your life to your purpose, right, and that’s a really big conversation. But he made a statement about even if you just are focused on the next task, right, and it was the word task, it wasn’t like project or anything huge, it was tasked

Paul Zelizer  41:17

It wasn’t full experience.

Heather Pearce Campbell  41:20

That small amount of purpose can mean literally the difference of, making it another day or not. And he gave his own experience about having that manuscript destroyed right before he was sent off to the concentration camp, and in his mind, knowing he needed to write that again, like that, you know, he had that as like the thing that he needed to do. And, anyways, that when I related that story, and I thought about that, because part of it was like, Huh, do I you know, yes, that rang true for me, because I remember and I had a near death experience myself, I mean, totally different, not on parallel in any way to Victor’s experience. But I had a procedure that went wrong on the way to becoming a mom and I bled out a whole bunch of blood into my abdomen. And right before I was headed to the hospital, because I knew something was really badly wrong. And I just looked and I kept passing out, but I looked to my husband, I was like, you gotta get me to the hospital. And the doctor just kept telling us to lay down on the couch that I was dehydrated, I would have died if I had taken her advice. But before I left for the hospital, I remember having this thought, and my husband basically had to carry me but I remember, like, one of my last thoughts before I totally blacked out was like, I am not going anywhere. I have got a Dan Kennedy workshop to be at in two weeks. serve more people in my bit like it was the next thing you know, that was and I just remember being like, no, Hell no, I’m not going anywhere. I got to be at that workshop. Anyway. Long story short, like I, I lost a lot of blood into my abdomen, like, by the time I got to the hospital, I hardly had a pulse. And I survived, obviously. And I went to the workshop, I’m sure that I was not supposed to be flying because my abdomen was still full of blood. But I got on a plane and I went,

Paul Zelizer  43:15


Heather Pearce Campbell  43:16

And but it was just it was the next thing for me that I was just so committed to making happen. And like, I think the power of that is even if in small ways we can attach what we’re doing to something more meaningful to something bigger, you know. And there’s a quote, I think it comes from the Angela Duckworth book about the difference between a bricklayer when you ask them like what they’re working on, right? Yes, laying a brick versus like building a house of God, right? The perspective in that of like, how we attach meaning to our work. And so I love that and I think it gives people in this space, a huge leg up when it comes to the commitment levels they have to their work and to longevity and to figuring out a path to make it work. So I for 1am so grateful for people like you that help them on their path and make that an easier path.

Paul Zelizer  44:14

My path, I do my best.

Heather Pearce Campbell  44:16

I know, that’s all we can do. So, a couple things before we wrap up. One I want to ask you because you’ve got your own podcast and I know you’ve been doing an amazing job of showing up for other people on their podcast just like you’re doing here. What are you what are you finding in that experience? What are you enjoying about it?

Paul Zelizer  44:37

Which side I call it? Both sides in the mic? Yeah, you’re being a gas.

Heather Pearce Campbell  44:43

Well, or both? And particularly the being a guest part. Right? Because you get to bring your message into new you know, new places. 

Paul Zelizer  44:53

Yeah. So being a guest i think is the single most underrated and yet powerful marketing stuff. And that nobody’s talking about, but should be. And the thing about being a host that, you know, we just published Episode 139 today or something like that. So three years, we’re now publishing twice a week. So like, I’m really down for it as a host. Like, there aren’t too many podcasts in our space that publish twice a week. Right?

Heather Pearce Campbell  45:20

Right. Well, and really quick on the podcasting statistics, because I know that they went through a big uptick, you know, because of COVID. And actually, even right before COVID, I think end of 2018, we were at like 900,000 podcasts. And then 2019 end of 2019. It was like, one No, sorry, it’s 500,000 podcasts. And then 2019, before COVID, 900,000. Yes, right. Almost at the million mark was 900,000. And then after COVID started 1.1 million. But if you actually look at the statistics, only 300,000 of those total, are actually actively producing

Paul Zelizer  46:03

I agree. The average podcast only lasts till about Episode Seven, right? Yes. So if you stick with it, congratulations, Heather. you’re you’re you’re at the whatever, some upper end of the curve, right. But if you stick with it as a host, there’s that’s that’s another whole thing about how being but but if you’re not sure yet, or you’re newer, you know, you know, a podcast is a long belt. Yes. If you’re looking to get rich quick, or like have clients fall out of this guy with Episode Three, or even Episode 12, I got news for you. Yeah, you can do all the things, you can have all the beautiful graphics and great sound quality and awesome guests. And it’s gonna take it’s a long build strong. Yes. The thing about being a guest is not necessarily a long build strategy, if you’re really wise about who you approach being, somebody has been holding the space as a host, in my case for three years, and 139 episodes or whatever. Some people, you know, somebody is in recent conversation with you as an entrepreneur podcast with 5 million subscribers on iTunes. Wow. And he needs gas like I think he I forget if he publishes once or twice a week, but we’re talking like 50 year 100 guests a year, right? Yeah, looking for people doing innovative things. And he’s got 5 million subscribers. He’s been building it, I think for seven years. In his case, even if it’s not 5 million, and a podcast gets 1000 downloads every episode, some get 10,000, even if they get 100. Right? Imagine if somebody said to you, I got this great conference of people who are absolutely passionate and want to know more about this thing that you’re an expert in. And I’m going to put 5000 people in a room, I can’t pay you, Heather. But these people are raving fans for the exact topic that you are an expert in. And I can’t pay you, but I’ll put you on the stage for an hour. And you can say almost anything you want, as long as you don’t, you know, write boundaries? And would you say yes to that? If you said No, I’d be like, ah, whatever. I don’t know what kind of entrepreneur you are, but I’ll do it. Right. That’s what podcasting is somebody is created, they built the stage, they filled the seats with people who are if you pick the podcast, right, and they’re just hungry to learn more about what you know, and you just get to walk on the stage, do your thing. And then the host takes the episode puts in the music. And you get a link and and they’re gonna take it to your audience Plus, you get to take it to your audience. And if you’re smart, that’s a pretty good proposition to like, what other marketing form do you have that opportunity. And by the way, it’s super fun. And by the way, you don’t have to talk in sound bites. And by the way, it’s one of the most intimate forms of connection on the internet that you could possibly imagine. And by the way, podcast listeners are younger, they more educated, they make more money and their early adaptors than the average population. They’re looking for new ideas, and they have money to buy what you sell. If that’s not interesting today, podcast gas. You don’t want to do it if you know if you if you know stuff, and you want new people to actually fall in love with your new idea, because you don’t do it exactly like everybody else’s. You definitely don’t want to be a part if you are interested in innovation and people have money in your pocket to spend on your innovative thing. I don’t know anything else out there like.

Heather Pearce Campbell  49:47

Yeah well, I love that. I mean, it’s a great description of really showing how like what an easy invitation that is to accept when you look at all the work that goes into mine, you know, On the front end of creating one and hosting it and producing it every week, and then the backend of what happens after the thing is recorded, right? It’s so much more than what people see. But yeah, if you’re not interested in that, like, okay, you know, leave room for the rest of it. Exactly.

Paul Zelizer  50:17

That’s more room for me, boy by this past week. Other I’ve had the largest wave of new client inquiries that I’ve had at least five years.

Heather Pearce Campbell  50:26

Well, I love it. And I know you’ve been using it really successfully as a strategy, which is why I wanted to ask you about it.

Paul Zelizer  50:32

And because I’ve been on several, pretty well known hire audience podcasts in the past two weeks, and people listen to them and said, I listened to your episode with so and so. And I have them. Can we talk right? Now? And of course we could,

Heather Pearce Campbell  50:48

Yes, I love it. And I mean, it is somebody has built a platform. And you can think of it like a stage. And I also heard somebody describe it, like, the nature and this gets to the intimacy portion of the way that podcasts are and how they’re listened to, it’s really a lot more like having somebody sit down with you at your dinner table.

Paul Zelizer  51:10

Right? Even more than like being on a stage. I call it a scale virtual coffee. Right. Hi, there. I’m Paul talk. And we share stories. And Paul tells you about when he had a drunk an incident at 17 and other stories about her journey. Yeah. And, and it, it’s like the people you here’s my reference point other it’s like when you go to a conference, and you’ve been in a space for a long time, there’s the like, now I’m going to push the button on my TED talk or my conference keynote. Okay, yeah. When you’re first new and your first year two or three, great, but then there’s what happens afterwards at the wine bar, the coffee shop, with the people who are really knowledgeable been doing for years, and oh, yeah, Joe, Joe’s been doing that talk forever, right. And that’s great. But what you really for is those deep, intimate conversations with people who know your space after the formal conference is over. Right? At this point in my career, that’s when there used to be these things called conferences. Right? That’s why I would go right. That’s what podcasting is. But it’s scaled and it’s inclusive. Because once we record this, right, it’s there. You know, my podcasts, your podcast, if we don’t do anything dumb, like not payers or hosting thing, it’s there until we stop paying it or until there’s not an internet and anybody with an internet connection can listen to those kind of conversations. That’s how I think about podcasting.

Heather Pearce Campbell  52:36

Well, and it’s really, you know, and I’m newer to it than you are obviously, I’m, I’m just over a month in, but I’ve got my 10th episode just released Tuesday night, I remember what day of the week we’re at. Yes. And but I’ve got like, 

Paul Zelizer  52:52

What year is this? What planet am I on? 

Heather Pearce Campbell  52:58

Pretty much my daily …

Paul Zelizer  53:03

Thank you, COVID-19.

Heather Pearce Campbell  53:03

Where am I exactly? Um, but I’ve got 25 recorded and edited and in the pipeline, like until the end of the year, and so

Paul Zelizer  53:12

You’re gonna be at a twice a month schedule, twice a week, and like, there’s all these awesome conversate I don’t want to leave them there for six months. Right? 

Heather Pearce Campbell  53:21

That’s the struggle I’m facing right now is I’m really enjoying it. I’m like holy cow, I might need to actually convert to, you know, but that said, I’m hopeful that at some point, maybe I’ll have 1000s of downloads. But right now, I’m still really touched even when one person reaches out and says, Hey, I listened to your episode from last week. And it really, you know, even just one person make it still makes the work worth it and makes the conversation that much more meaningful. So anyways, all of this is to say I’m grateful for you. I’m grateful that you joined me today you’ve got such like such brilliance to share with people across a variety of topics. Like really, you can go deep into the deep meaningful stuff and like all the business fundamentals and I love that where do you like to connect? So for people who are like, hey, I want to follow up with this Paul guy and I’ll for people listening Obviously, I’m going to share Paul and all of his links in the show notes at legal website warrior comm forward slash podcast. But Paul, where do you like to connect?

Paul Zelizer  54:26

My social platform of choice is where we met on LinkedIn. Right? So I’m on all the channels but LinkedIn is like the place where leaders go, and yeah, you can listen to my podcasts that are we’re printers.com forward slash podcasts and there’s always conversations going on at the bout those episodes and stuff.

Heather Pearce Campbell  54:46

I love that well and for people listening to definitely should hop over listen to Paul’s podcast. He’s a really skilled …

Paul Zelizer  54:54

Go listen to my podcast episode, this fabulous woman named Heather Pearce Campbell. (Laughing).  No, no, no,

Heather Pearce Campbell  55:02

You know what you are really gifted host. And I think people would really enjoy listening to you. And so I would love for them to go visit that link. Any final thoughts, Paul, before we sign off? What do you want people to take away?

Paul Zelizer  55:19

Oh, just particularly for the folks who listen to this show, please take really good care of yourself. We’re in unprecedented times and the levels of stress and polarization and just economic disruption and, you know, challenges to our health and well being are unprecedented, please, whatever good health care practice, I’m sorry, self care practices, you have wellness practices, there’s never been a more important time to practice.

Heather Pearce Campbell  55:51

Yeah, absolutely. Such a good reminder. Well, Paul, thank you. I appreciate you. I know we’re going to be in touch again very soon. But really, I’m grateful to have had you here today.

Paul Zelizer  56:02

Thank you so much for having me, Heather, it’s been fabulous.

GGGB Outro  56:08

Thank you for joining us today on the Guts, Grit & Great Business podcast. We hope that we’ve added a little fuel to your tank, some coffee to your cup and pep in your step to keep you moving forward in your own great adventures. For key takeaways links to any resources mentioned in today’s show and more. See the show notes which can be found at legalwebsitewarrior.com/podcast, be sure to subscribe to the podcast and if you enjoyed today’s conversation, please give us some stars and a review on Apple podcast, Spotify or wherever you get your podcast so others will find us to keep up the great work you are doing in the world and we’ll see you next week.